Diamonds / Industry

Alrosa Not Commenting on Reports of CEO Departure


Russian diamond miner Alrosa is declining comment on a report that Sergey S. Ivanov (pictured), its CEO since 2017, is resigning before his contract expires.

The report appeared in the Russian business news source RBC, which cited the Telegram channel Brief, as well as its own sources.

RBC said that Ivanov plans to work at Volga Group, headed by Gennady Timchenko, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

An RBC source said that leaving was Ivanov’s “personal decision,” driven by “his intention to work in private business.” The source said there were no complaints about Ivanov’s five-year tenure at Alrosa, labeling him “a decent, intelligent leader.”

On Feb. 25, immediately after Russian’s invasion of Ukraine, Ivanov was slapped with U.S. sanctions. Alrosa is one-third owned by the Russian government. In March, Ivanov asked for his salary to be cut in half in response to the sanctions, according to Russian news source RIA Novosti.

His purported departure will likely not have any impact on the current U.S. sanctions against Alrosa. In April, the miner was added to the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list, a strong action that forbids U.S. companies from doing business with it.

While some have speculated that Ivanov may be stepping down because of the sanctions against him, the RBC report claimed that Ivanov had originally planned to depart earlier but delayed his decision following the Ukraine invasion.

Ivanov is the son of Putin’s former chief of staff,  Sergey Ivanov Sr., who has been under U.S. sanctions since 2014.

In October, the U.S. Department of State met with diamond industry representatives to ensure “robust implementation of Russia-focused sanctions and broader due diligence standards.”

That same month, Ivanov told officials in the Siberian province of Yakutia, where most of Alrosa’s mines are located, that “the company is operating normally and does not plan to reduce production plans and social obligations.”

Photo courtesy of the government of Russia

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By: Rob Bates

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